It’s been roughly six weeks since I embarked on ‘Super Fit at 50’ – my journey to become a leaner, fitter runner and have more energy and drive for the important things in life. It all culminates in attempting to conquer Centurion Running’s South Downs Way 100 in under 24 hours.
What I’ve learned along the way
I’ve lost some weight. Aside from that, there are plenty of other tangible changes I’ve noticed over the last six weeks:
I think I’m more focused on what’s actually important in each day. I’ve realised that Super Fit at 50 is about making clear decisions about how I choose to live my life, which translates into how I act day to day – on the trails, at home and at work. It’s been about recognising what’s becoming a distraction from my core focus, which in itself has made me more committed to reaching my goals.
It’s not always been easy, but as I devote more energy in each day to focus on people and things that will help me fulfil my mission (‘to be the best person I can be, and help others to do the same’), I feel happier.
Going up, not down
Every step taken and every milestone achieved – however small – reinforces my commitment to reaching my Super Fit at 50 goals. It’s easy to get lost in the ‘stuff’ of life, just carrying on to see another day through. That can lead to feeling like you’re spiralling downwards, tunnelling into life. If that sounds like you, don’t lose hope. We all go through downward chapters in our lives. Quite often, turning the page starts with making some decisions about how you want to live your life and setting some milestones to chart that new journey. Set yourself some actions to achieve each milestone and voila! You have a plan. That’s essentially what I’m doing with Super Fit.
I am losing the kilos. There have definitely been weeks where my weight has stagnated or gone back up, but even on a bad day now my baseline is still some 5kg less than back in September. And I’m not just talking about body image, here. As endurance runners, there’s the simple pleasure of more fluid, efficient running when we’re carrying less weight and feeling in better condition – whatever that looks like for you.
Feeling good on fasting
I’m feeling the benefits of regular Intermittent Fasting (IF), combined with balanced eating and drinking on non-fasting days, and it’s paying off. It’s not about hunger: when I’m hungry, I eat. Broadly, I keep to a 16/8 routine most days of the week. By ‘broadly’, I mean that it flexes depending on where I am and what I’m doing. Over the coming weeks, I’ll experiment with including a longer 24-hour fast once or twice a month.
The first major milestone I’ve set for Super Fit at 50 is something I’ve dubbed the ‘Six Pack Challenge’, originally inspired by my daughter as a measure of how lean and mean I can get by Christmas as a runner. My trousers are now a bit looser and a few friends have commented that I’m looking a bit leaner. However, one consequence of my house move at the end of September has meant that it’s been harder to create space to do weight conditioning work – something I now want to make a priority.
In short, Super Fit at 50 is going well so far: I’ve lost some weight, I feel like a more efficient runner, and I can see that it’s already paying dividends on the energy I have for what’s important in life. That’s what feels amazing.
I’d love to know how anyone else is getting on – whether you’re joining me on SF@50 or are on your own mission to lose weight as a runner or later in life. Leave me a comment or drop me a line on firstname.lastname@example.org